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THE RISE OF THE UNIVERSITIES          157

the gilds of craftsmen and merchants maintained priests to pray
for the souls of dead members and to perform the religious cere-
monies connected with their corporate functions, and many of
these priests occupied their spare time by conducting a school for
the sons of members or for the community as a whole. As
examples of such schools may be mentioned the ancient grammar
school at Stratford-on-Avon, where Shakespeare learned his
" small Latin and less Greek/' and the Merchant Taylors' School
in London (founded in 1561), which is one of the few schools still
under gild auspices. (4) Chantry Schools had an origin similar to
that of the gild schools. A chantry (cantarid) was an endowment
for the maintenance of a priest to sing prayers for the soul of a
dead person; and, as this was not full-time employment for a
man, it became the common practice to assign to chantry priests
such additional work as the teaching of a grammar school. There
were about a hundred schools of the kind in England in the
Sixteenth Century.

It is worthy of note that in some of these schools we have the
first signs of the breaking away of ordinary education from the
direct control of the Church, such as had already taken place in
the higher sphere of university education. The breach indeed was
still slight. Even where schools like those of the gilds were no
longer managed by the Church, the teacher was invariably a clerk.
But by the Fifteenth Century there were indications that teaching
was ceasing to be a clerical monopoly. Thus it appears that in
this century three successive headmasters of York Cathedral
Grammar School were laymen ; and occasionally from this time
onwards schools were founded with the explicit statutory provision
that their headmasters should be laymen and not priests. Even
more significant as a sign of the times was the rise of Burgh
Schools in Germany and Scotland, in which not merely the main-
tenance of the school but in many cases the appointment of the
teachers fell to the municipality. Probably in most, if not all,
instances such appointments were made subject to the approval
of the chancellor or some other church official, but gradually a
few towns acquired still greater independence. What seems to be
the earliest recorded case of a purely municipal appointment in
Scotland occurred in 1464, when " the bailies and neighbours"
of Peebles appointed one Sir William Blaklok schoolmaster of the
burgh. An even more interesting case is furnished by the Burgh